Ben Barbanel, head of debt finance at OakNorth Bank, offers advice to care operators looking to secure growth finance
With the UK population continuing to age, driven primarily by higher living and healthcare standards, the elderly care and retirement living industry remains one of the most important in the UK.
According to House of Commons research, the UK’s older generations are projected to grow significantly, with people aged 65 and over making up 24 per cent of the population by 2043 (17.4 million people), and those aged 75 and over projected to rise from 8 per cent in 2018 to 13 per cent by 2043.1 These figures will amplify the need for more elderly care in the future, meaning that more needs to be done to support the growth ambitions of profitable care home operators and investors moving forward.
However, before operators start to consider securing capital to support their growth, it is critical they first ensure that they have a strong business plan in place to navigate the current cost of living crisis and rising inflation, both of which are heavily impacting all parts of society. With recent reports revealing that some care homes are having to reduce the size of meals being served while simultaneously hiking up fees by hundreds of pounds a month,2 now more than ever, operators need to have an experienced management team in place and a healthy cash flow forecast to ensure they are able to ride out the current crisis without a drop in their current operational standards.
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